Why Organisations Need to Look Online to Meet Consumer Expectations

Suppliers and retailers must keep a close eye on changes in consumer behaviour, to closely align product offerings to new consumer priorities. Companies should look to e-commerce to track how these trends are manifesting themselves in actual products.

As the shift to online retailing accelerates, organisations face a multitude of challenges to stay ahead of their competitors and fend off threats from new companies and brands entering the market. A vast online product selection does not just give consumers more purchase options, it also increases the need for organisations to continuously monitor the products and attributes being sold generally, and through the e-commerce channel specifically.

Tracking e-commerce data helps companies move quickly

Using e-commerce data to monitor changing product attributes also provides significant benefits compared to traditional brick and mortar channel research and scan data covering those channels.

As more store-based retailers adopt a multichannel strategy and move online, technology can be used to automatically capture and organise their full product assortment item by item and from one day to the next in a way that is simply not possible with in-store retail audits. E-commerce data extraction and data science solutions allow companies to quickly monitor changing consumer wants and preferences by way of changes to the products being offered online on a day to day, or week to week basis.

The rise of e-commerce means that businesses are consuming more detailed and frequent data than ever to inform their strategy. Making sense of all that data remains an enormous challenge. No one solution works for everyone but applying the right technology and data structure can deliver the insights needed to better understand both the e-commerce space and increasingly fluid and fragmented product assortments.

Euromonitor’s global e-commerce tracking tool, Via, can measure the activation of consumer trends by counting the number of stock keeping units (SKUs) sold online with product attributes corresponding to that trend. We can also track how SKU counts for different attributes change over time to gauge if a consumer trend is growing or declining.

Reposition, reformulate or launch?

Businesses can use online product assortments from leading e-commerce websites to systematically and continuously track product attributes and leverage that information to inform different brand strategies:

  • Repositioning brands to more effectively communicate key messages
  • Reformulating products to include key attributes
  • Launching new products where white space exists for attractive product attributes

While companies need to layer on additional analysis to decide on the correct brand strategy to execute, e-commerce assortment data that tracks the prevalence of different product attributes over time provides a powerful starting point.

In our latest white paper, we have introduced one of the most important global consumer trends in a post COVID-19 world, Safety Obsessed, and shown how the trend is manifesting itself in different consumer goods markets around the world by quantifying the number of SKUs sold online with product attributes corresponding to that trend.

Using this combination of our Global Consumer Trends analysis at the strategic level and our e-commerce assortment tracking at the tactical level, we will show how companies can utilise this information to improve their online product presence and performance.

Learn more in our latest white paper ‘How to Activate Consumer Trends using E-commerce Product Attribute Data’.